Team TLJ’s Conversation with actor Sargun Mehta
You are a much loved actor in Punjabi film industry. But what is your first love, your perennial favourtie- Punjab movie industry or Indian television?
My first love is definitely Punjabi movie industry. I owe a lot of my success, my name to Indian television but ever since I was a kid, I fascinated being a film heroine. Through movies, I got this chance to explore myself as a film actor. I think I have received more credit for the very actor I am from the film industry much more than I got in television industry. I am so happy that people now know me because of my work and that is what I had always wanted!
The biggest challenge that you had to face in your acting career….and the major turning point, if any, in your life…
In terms of a challenge, I don’t want to delve deep into how many people have said no to me and how many times people have told me what I can and what I can’t do. But definitely, Angrejj (a much loved Punjabi movie) became a turning point when I was very low. While shooting for Balika Vadhu (television serial), I thought I was stuck in a rut. I was not in a very comfortable head space. I was doing same thing every day and it was not satisfying for me. No body appreciated me. Nobody sat down to tell me how brilliantly I have done a scene. That was something I always craved for and that I got after Angrej! That was the turning point. And the biggest challenge had been people saying ‘no’ and you just have to remember that if they are saying no, something better is awaiting you. You have to start thinking that when people say no, it does not mean you don’t fit in the frame. It is a message from the universe that you are meant for something bigger!
What does success in films and television mean to you?
It means I can now be a part of those rare people in the world who have the capacity to inspire other people. When I look at what I have achieved, I think I have come a long way. I have manifested every dream that I ever saw. And it is only past few months that I have thought that I have looked at other people’s interview and have thought that I am not going to give just any random interview, random message, random speech. I want to say something that I mean from my heart and that inspires people.
Whom do you idolize the most in this industry…as an admired actor?
I am fond of Sridevi, Shabana Azmi, Kajol Rani Mukherji, Alia Bhat. Apart from that, I don’t idolize people. I simply listen to them and try to receive how they have come a long way and achieved what they have. But if I really idolize someone, it is Ravi (her husband) because he is a tremendous actor. He has got loads of love from TV, audience. Whatever I know of my art comes from him.
Your thoughts on the advent of modernization in Punjabi film industry….
Modernization is more about time but the industry and audience are evolving. People are exploring others. When I saw my first Punjabi Movie, Jatt and Juliet; I really thought that it was such an amazing budget Bollywood film. When a film earns a lot, it does not only mean that the film is good but also that it has opened up space for audience. There are lot of people who have come to me and said that we did not watch Punjabi films earlier but now we have begun watching them! It shows how lot of people have begun to feel connected to the Punjabi films. Since our audience is increasing, we are getting chance to be more experimental and evolve our films into something better.
Who is Sargun behind the camera? Tell us about a usual day at home when you are away from work…
Sargun is pretty weird. Either you will see her fully energetic jumping around the house or you will see her sitting in a corner all day watching a favorite show. When I start watching a series on Netflix and I like it, I will watch it eight hours, back to back. If I start reading a book, I will finish the book in maximum two weeks. I am somebody like that. A usual day of work is getting up in the morning, having black coffee and an apple, going to gym, coming back and finishing my meetings and finally sitting down and watching my favorite films, reading books and spending time with my loved ones.
How do you describe your life after marriage? Professionally and personally how has it affected (if at all) you?
My life personally and professionally has not changed. With Ravi, I have learned what loving yourself means. What miracles can happen when you show gratitude. The understanding of how small gesture can change your life comes from Ravi. He has, in that way, changed me completely.
Your dance at your brother’s wedding recently had been catching headlines! Are you a dance lover at heart?
I love dancing. I am not a perfect dancer. I am a baaraat, shadi dancer. When you play music at a party, you will see me dancing right from the beginning when music is played to the moment when you have to push me out that “You have to stop dancing now”. I can’t dance on English songs. I can dance only on Punjabi songs. Dancing at my brother’s wedding was a surprise for my brother and he was thrilled and taken aback with the gesture.
Anything you miss doing in life while living an actor’s life?
There is nothing I miss. I love every part of it. I have always wanted to live it. Usually people think that I might get pissed when fans engulf me or ask for pictures or autographs but this is what I have prayed for. So, there is nothing really that I miss.
Here is a quick round of candid questions answered by Balika Vadhu Actress Sargun Mehta
Your first date
Don’t remember, really!
Top destination on your holiday agenda
London and New York
My heart break happens every time I realize Shahrukh Khan is married
Family, fame or money?
Family, if I have to choose one. However, I think it is important to maintain balance between all three. Even if one of these is missing, you would not be happy!
One thing you would never tolerate in your partner
What turns you on in a guy?
Sense of Humour
What turns you off in a guy?
Any misconception your loved ones have about you?
Not loved ones, but people who meet me first time might take me as a ‘bitchy girl’ with loads of attitude and arrogance. That is not true!
Relationship advice for young girls
If you don’t love yourself, you can’t love your partner. Don’t get into a relationship before you are settled in your life. Make a name for yourself and then consider relationship seriously.
One habit you want to change about yourself
I stress a lot about work and I want to change that
Your biggest fear at this point
No fears, maybe natural disasters
Something that leaves you depressed or extremely emotional
Work and when Ravi (my husband) is not around